Back To You

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Chapter 17 - Sophie & Keefe

My eyes flutter open.

I groan as the dull lights hit my eyes. My headache worsens as I looked around.... I am in Exile. I wipe the drool off my chin. I move my hands up into my view. This is strange- I’m not restrained? I know I’m in a cell- bigger than my bedroom in Havenfield and I’m laying on my back on a-a.... Bed?

“Keefe?” I mutter to no one in particular. I’m alone but then how did I wake up? Didn’t they perform a memory break? I scratch my head which is itchy. I scramble up to sit upright. I can hear moans from other prisoners. I look in front of me and I see an immense silver door with a porthole. I let out a trembling breath.

Get out, get out, get out!

I shake my head trying to get a hold of myself while half of me except gnomes to barge in any second.

Get out, get out, get out!

But how? I sit criss-cross on the bed and massage my temples trying to finger out a suitable solution.

Inhale.

Exhale.

Softly but long.

Concentrate, Sophie, Concentrate.

I looked deep into my mind.

For Keefe.

It was like my mind had a brain of its own. It was feeding off my adrenaline to create warmness and enthusiasm; it was combining the two components together; like a missile launching out of my mind- the blast shreds, but making no sound just like I ordered it too and a void bursts in front of me.

I smile to myself and scramble to my feet just as the alarms went off. The siren wailing electronically along the corridors, leaping out from the corners, echoing everywhere. Overhead, a light flashed red. I ignored it and stepped into the void just as the door flung open.

I looked around at the familiar grayness and thought of the only place that was actually... home.

The void splits with a blinding flash of light and I fall through it and I drop onto the delicate grass of Havenfield.

I breathe in the sweet air- which was nothing like the one in Exile. My hands run through it before I thrust up; running inside, my stomach thundering.

I smooth my wrinkled tunic as I clump into the kitchen; still getting used to walking. I look through all the cabinets trying to find a bottle of Youth.

When I find the bottle, I gulp it down in one breath, smelling myself as I do.

And... yep, I stink.

I hold my breath as I grab another bottle of Youth and gulp it down, slower than last time. It tastes luscious like... Keefe.

Wait... KEEFE!

I shake my head and put the bottle on the counter, and run upstairs to my room, still swallowing the Youth, praying I don’t choke on it.

When I reach my room I’m out of breath and I feel sweat trickle down my back, making me smell worse.

I gasp in astonishment and clasp my hand over my mouth.

My eyes hold tears that are just begging to escape. “Keefe,”

My room was covered in rose petals, red and white. There is a path of petals leading to my bed. They’re candles scattered everywhere, making the room have a faint glow. My eyes stray to my bed which has English letters on it made from the rose petals. I walk forward to read the message, my nose tingling from the intense smell of roses.

My bottom lip quivered as I read the heartwarming message.

I love you, Sophie

There are two boxes of mallowmelt, piled on each other on the edge of my vast bed with a bouquet of pink roses and a card.

I stride forward and grab the card. The front was blank only with a red heart in the middle.

Dear, Sophie

Even though we are miles apart,

You are never far from my heart.

I loved you then,

I love you now.

It’s always when

And never how.

Take me back to yesterday,

All the wonderful things you had to say.

I loved you then,

I love you now.

It’s always when

And never how.

I see your eyes,

I feel you near,

Although you’re not

Really here.

Yours truly, Keefe

P.S. Happy Valentine’s Day!

“Oh, Keefe,” Tears overflow my eyes as I see a faint teardrop that is still evaporating on the card. I bite my lip as I carefully place the card on my bed.

I sniffle as I look around my room. Everything was covered in Keefe’s decorations except for my desk.

I let out a breath as my eyes find the spyball. I walk forward and look at the dusty spyball that hasn’t been touched- which makes me wonder how long I’ve actually been in Exile. To me, it feels like two seconds.

My eyes find my imparter, and I pick it up to see the date.

I gasp when I finish doing the math in my head. It is the day after Valentine’s Day.

I glance at the year. It’s been 15 months since I was locked up in Exile. I wonder how Keefe’s doing. And my heart races with trepidation as I wipe my nose with my filthy hand and I pick up the spyball, hastily almost dropping it. “Show me Keefe Sencen,” I said it so suddenly and out of breath, the spyball didn’t even acknowledge.

I sigh and try again. “Show. Me. Keefe. Sencen,” I say, impatiently.

Keefe appears in the ball, I bite my lip so stimulating it cracks.

His legs are bent up, and Keefe’s clothes are wrinkled. He had black bags underneath his eyes and his hair... was flat- nothing like Keefe’s original style.

My breath catches when I look to see where he is.

At my tree.

I bite my finger to stop any sound as I look into his bloodshot eyes.

“Oh, Keefe,” I shake my head.

I swiftly throw my spyball back onto my bed, getting ready to teleport.

#14- Keefe’s POV

(I made it in his because I thought it’ll be cuter- hopefully)

~A day after Valentine’s Day~

I rest my head back on Sophie’s tree, through teary eyes I watch the sun fall behind the horizon, painting the sky shades of red and pink, and I thank God that this day has come and gone. All the pain I suffered. All the hurt I’ve felt. Everything. Gone.

I gawk at my wrist. I know this sounds stupid, but... I got tattoos.

Yup, really stupid.

More like dumb.

But at least the council hates me more. Almost everyone in the lost cities does not approve of tattoos but I haven’t told anyone yet, it’s only been like... eight hours since I got them. I thought the pain would get my mind off... stuff- BUT it did for like two hours.

I have one just a few inches below my neck. It was an eagle facing upwards, its wings outstretched which stopped all the way to my arms and stopped down my back. There was basically more ink than skin. I had a small sun drawn over the right side of my chest and small birds traveling upwards.

And then... on my right wrist, I had Sophie’s name engraved. With a space between every letter of her name. I had her name in English because I thought she was raised there and stuff.

My eyes roam over to my left hand and my large and thick scar which is still very visible. It has a slight bump to it and only aches when I touch it.

When I’m gone, do nothing to yourself- for me.

As Sophie’s voice rings through my ears a pang of guilt hits me like someone hitting a gong; it reverberates in me, drinking whatever satisfaction was left in me.

An explosion of emotions hit me almost sending my head to hit Sophie’s tree. But something was off about the emotions, they were complicating. Like I couldn’t place them...

My breathing stops when I realize who’s emotions those belong to. My head jerks up.

“Sophie!” Before I could even order my legs to jolt up, they already do. Before I know what’s happening my legs are sprinting towards the powerful emotions. The wind blows against my face and some pieces of dirt prickle against my skin. But I don’t care I just keep running towards Sophie.

Some part of me thinks I’m delusional. I probably am, but it does not stop me from running to Sophie.

I stop dead when the emotions are stronger than ever but then they quickly wither away.

I try turning back and race to where I had just left, trying to track down the intense emotions. I turn left, then right, I go backward, and forwards- but I know I’m going in circles when I stop at Sophie’s tree.

“Sophie?” I yell but no response, I take a deep breath.

“Foster?” I try it again.

Nothing.

Am I really that crazy?

But I can feel this crazy pull of emotions almost pulling me closer to the owner.

I try to swallow the familiar lump in my throat as I fumble out my home crystal.

The emotions are stronger now.

But I know I’m going insane and I continue trying to find my crystal from my pockets.

When I finally have it in my hand, I feel it vibrating and... it’s like some force was pulling it away.

(A/N- STAR WARS... Lol)

I study my clear crystal as the force becomes stronger. Then my crystal chucks (A/N-- yeet!) across the forest while my eyes never neglect it.

“You... b-broke your promise,”

My heart freezes and my eyes widen, brighten, wild, and full of hope. My legs go jello while I beg them to turn around.

Then Sophie steps in front of me while I stare into her sweet, brown eyes.

Is this just another hallucination?

I pray to God it’s not as Sophie stares back- the person I fell in love with.

My breathing goes shallow as my right-hand twitches up to touch her cheek. “You’re...” my voice lingers off as my skin meets hers, blood rushes to my finger as I quickly pull away, forgetting how to breathe. The bottom of my mouth shudders. “Here...”

The way her lips lift upward.

The way her one dimple crinkles.

The way her teeth are perfectly aligned.

The warm glow her happiness gives.

Her smile is a ray of sunshine, and I’m the sunburn.

“I... remembered you,” Sophie says while my eyes never leave her for a second, not wanting to miss a moment of this.

I try my best to speak but my tongue doesn’t move instead I find myself getting succumbed in Sophie’s eyes.

Sophie stares back and closes the space between us, her chest rising and falling as she breathes while my breath is still shallow.

“Remembered me?” I finally say, my heart hammering against my ribcage.

Sophie bites her lip. “I know that sounds really cheesy but-”

I put my finger on her sorta dry lips and lean in very close. I whispered, “It’s not cheesy,” and I stop for a pause to stare into her eyes. “I missed you- a lot,”

“Sor-” Sophie began.

“Don’t be,” My voice finally starting to work.

Sophie stares at me, and finally, her hands reach up to my face. Her fingers brush the bottom of my eyes, tracing my face with her fingers leaving me tillitated and intrigued and she finally goes up to my hair.

But is Sophie really here?

Is this real?

Or am I dreaming?

Even if I am, I hope I never wake up.

“You know- I don’t like your hair like this. What happened to your promise?”

I split a grin. “To be fair, I didn’t promise,”

“But still,” Sophie presses and grabs my left hand, lacing our fingers together and I wince as her fingers press on my scar.

Sophie looks at me, perplexed. She presses harder and I bite my lip trying not to cringe.

Sophie’s breathing races as she lets go of my hand but carries it by my wrist. I watch her eyes as they roam to my hand. She gasps and I look away while she carefully brushes her fingers over my visible scar.

“Keefe- why,” her voice breaks while I could feel burning tears in my eyes but I blink them away.

I clear my throat and look her way getting ready to lie. “It was an accident,”

Sophie looks hurt. “Don’t lie, Keefe. I know this wasn’t an accident,”

I sigh and look at my hand. “Yeah.. it wasn’t,” I take a shaky breath and fumble with the bottom of my tunic. I sigh again. “There’s something else,”

Without hesitation I pull off my tunic, in one simple motion, revealing my fresh tattoos.

Sophie stifles her gasp as I turn around to show her my back.

I feel her tracing my back tattoo with her fingers. She spins me around by the shoulder and I almost forgot how strong she really is. Sophie trails her fingers on my stomach following the birds. “I...” Sophie’s voice lingers off as her eyes roam to my arms, my abs. She starts to grin. “I honestly like it,”

My eyes widen, and Sophie steps forward, her hands all around me. “You do?”

She nods giving me a teasing smile, her hand tracing the outline of my arms. “You’ve been working on these?”

My ears go on fire. “Y-yeah,” it’s too late to tease her now since she’s already teasing me.

Sophie’s grin stretches wider as I blush- BLUSH!

Her hands rest on my stomach. “Eight pack?”

I swallow and nod. My heart races at top speed and my adrenaline kicks in but I also feel excited.

She smiles and pulls my bottom lip down with her thumb, brushing her hands over my cheeks and I lean into her hand, closing my eyes.

“I love you,” Sophie whispers, her breath hot against my ear and she leans in, kissing my earlobe.

Sophie rests the side of her head on my chest, warping her arms around me and I do the same, resting my head on her shoulder, eyes still closed. “What if the council finds me?”

I hold her tighter. “I won’t let that happen, Sophie,”

Sophie squeezes me tighter before pulling away. And when she does, she laces our fingers together. I message her hands with my thumb. I start to lean in, slowly but Sophie looks at our hands together and I follow her gaze. Oh. She’s staring at my wrist- my RIGHT wrist, the one with her name on it. My ears burn up.

“Keefe?” Sophie pulls up our right entwined hand, and I let go of her hand ready to get it over. I hold out my palm to show her my wrist.

S O P H I E

Sophie bites her bottom lip, hiding her smile- which I could see. “Keefe... you know this is permanent... and y-you can’t remove it and-” Sophie stops herself, knowing that she’s rambling and looks up at me

“You’re permanent, too- you know but in my... my heart,”

Cheesy?

Yes.

True?

One-hundred percent.

Sophie smiles and looks back at her name, tracing it with her fingers. “When will you stop being so sweet?”

I smirk at her. “When will you stop being so cute?”

This time it was Sophie’s turn to blush. She looks up with a smile and I grin back at her.

I take a quick glance at her lips.

I suck in a shuddering breath.

We look into each other’s eyes.

I drown into the brown- golden depths of hers.

Suddenly a desire takes over me. A sudden want fills my body. I want to be close to her. I want to feel her. So...

I move my body closer to her.

I tilt my face towards her.

She doesn’t react.

“You haven’t forgotten how to kiss also, have you?” I ask her, stroking the side of her face.

Sophie widens her eyes and blush. “No,” she replies, shaking her head.

“Really? I don’t believe you,” I say with a teasing lightness to my voice.

She narrows her eyes- clearly annoyed and firmly says, “No, Keefe. I know how to kiss.”

“Prove it,” I say with a smirk.

She moves her face closer to mine and presses a gentle kiss to my lips.

A tingling sensation goes through me as she leaves slight prickles on my lips.

“You call that a kiss?” I ask when I finally recovered.

“Yeah?” she replies uncertainly, tilting her head.

“Lemme give you a demonstration,” I whisper and push against her lips but Sophie places her hand on my chest, keeping me from touching her lips.

I look up at her confused.

She sighs. “Sorry, Keefe. I just... probably smell so bad... I haven’t taken a shower in like... a year. So I stink and... I don’t want you to-” Sophie stops herself, biting her lip.

“Like I care, Soph,” I grin and smash my lips against hers- Sophie’s arguments turning into a muffled gasp.

We stay like that for a while.

Then, I part my lips, forcing hers to part.

I suck at her bottom lip. Then, suck at her top lip.

I would’ve enjoyed the kiss more if she is responding to it, but she isn’t. Instead, she runs her hands through my hair. Not giving up, I suck again at her bottom lip, and that’s when I feel her lips sucking at my top lip.

One of her hands buries into my hair, while the other one rests on the bare skin of my back.

I put one hand on her lower back and the other one rests on the back of her head.

We kiss for a while.

Then, I slip my tongue into Sophie’s mouth, feeling her teeth.

I brush it against her tongue. She brushes hers against mine.

The moment feels perfect.

Everything feels perfect.

We kept on kissing each other and only stopped to take a needy breath and then dug right back in.

Then, I slip my lips down to her chin and suck there. My lips follow along her jawline, reaching her earlobe.

From her ear, I go down to her neck. I kiss the side of her neck.

Then, I switch to the other side of her neck. My whole body tingles.

I hear Sophie taking a shuddering breath.

I pull away to smirk at her and she rolls her eyes and pushes me playfully

“What now?” Sophie asks, scratching the back of her neck.

“Hmm,” I think for a minute and suddenly I grin. “My home crystal?”

“Over there,” Sophie pointed to a distance bush.

I follow her finger and nod. “Got it,” I start to walk but Sophie holds me back.

“Hold up,” Sophie uses her telekinesis to bring my clear crystal to us.

I nudge Sophie with my shoulder. “Show off,”

Sophie smiles and rolls her eyes, handing me my crystal.

***

I close the door of my bedroom, glad that my dad isn’t here and me and Sophie take off our shoes.

“Soooo,” Sophie says, awkwardly, stepping back and colliding with my desk. “Now what?”

I smirk as I step forward before locking the door. I stride forward until me and Sophie are breathing the same air. Sophie’s breathing races as I lean even closer so that our foreheads are touching. We stare into each other’s eyes while I can feel Sophie shiver. Sophie puts her arms around my neck and I can feel goosebumps on her arms against my neck.

I smile. “Are you nervous, Foster?” I tuck a loose strand of her hair behind her ear. Sophie uses her finger to pull down my bottom lip.

“That depends, what are we going to do?”

I smirk and bump my nose to hers. I tilt my head up and kiss the space between her perfectly shaped eyebrows as she kisses my throat. I whisper, “Whatever you want,”

Sophie sucks in a long breath before fluttering her eyes close. She tilts her head as I part my lips. She fits her mouth in mine, perfectly. I push further and so I can feel the skin around her lips. Sophie brushes her tongue against my teeth, the top of my mouth, my tongue. I make a half moan half growl deep in my throat. I slip my tongue in Sophie’s mouth and brush it on Sophie’s bottom teeth.

We pull away just barely. I can still feel her lips brushing against mine. She sighs, slowly and her shoulders relax. She squeezes my neck with her arms- the top of her fingers in my hair and rests her head against the top of my still bare chest. I wrap my arms around her waist, leaning down to kiss her forehead.

Sophie uses one of her hands to follow the small tattoo birds on my chest. She reaches down to kiss each one of them, stroking my skin as she does. “This one is my favorite,” she whispers, touching the one closest to my chest.

“Oh, yeah?” I whisper in her ear, taking her earlobe between my lips, kissing it.

She nodes

“Hold up,” I gently take Sophie’s hand and I lead her to my bed.

I lay on my side as Sophie copies me, snuggling at my chest, stroking my skin. I breathe on her neck. I whisper, “You’re so beautiful”

Sophie smiles against my chest. I close my eyes and lean closer and I kiss her neck, sucking and licking at it. Sophie lets out soft moans against me as I kiss harder. She sucks in a slight breath. “Keefe,” she whispers and bends her neck back so I have more room. I drag my lips up and down against her neck, softly kissing her.

“I love you,” I whisper and kiss her jawline.

“I love you more,” Sophie’s eyes flutter close. I lean down to kiss the top of her nose then her lips, softly but long. Sophie bends her head up so that I could kiss her throat and I drag my lips all the way down and stop where the collar of her tunic meets her skin. I kiss her clavicle and below as far as I can.

I lean to her neck but Sophie stops me; she leans close to my ear while I kiss her shoulder. She whispers, “my turn,”

I smile when her lips meet mine. Sophie scoots up cupping my face with her hands. I let out a groan as she bits down. Sophie drags her lips to my ear, and she sucks at it and uses her tongue. She moves closer so that every inch touches me. Our ankles twist together. I breathe on her neck as she kisses me harder.

“Sophie?” I ask as Sophie bites down at my earlobe. I let out a groan and bury my head in Sophie’s shoulder.

“Hmm?” Sophie mumbles going down at my neck.

“I love you more than anything,” My eyes close.

“Even more than your hair?” Sophie teases, kissing the space between my neck and shoulder.

“Definitely,” I say without hesitation.

Sophie’s soft laugh vibrates through me which makes shivers dance down my spine. She kisses down my arm. She kisses every part of my upper body. I flip us so that I’m laying on top of her but not putting all my weight down on her. I fit my mouth between hers exploring every part of her mouth.

“That’s not fair,” Sophie whispers as we pull away.

I smirk. “So fair,” I return as I smash my lips down but she jerks away so that my kiss lands on her pillow.

“Soophiee,” I whine as Sophie pushes me down.

“Yes?” Sophie asks, kissing my chin and my bottom lip, fitting her lips between mine like two puzzle pieces. Our ankles are still twisted together. Sophie drags her hand over my abdomen, my stomach, my chest, and eventually rests on my face.

When we pull away, I lean in again but Sophie stops me by placing her index finger on my lips. I smile and kiss her finger. She smiles and bites her bottom lip.

Sophie licks my lips before pulling away, completely. We lay there face to face, staring at each other while Sophie plays with my hair. I lean in to kiss her cheek, her forehead, her chin- everywhere. I lean down to kiss Sophie’s upper chest and that’s when Sophie shivers.

“Keefe?” Sophie whispers, drowsily, as I kiss her bottom lip.

“Mhh?” I lean a few inches away from her face.

She entwines our fingers and scoots closer, snuggling up at my chest. “I’m... tr- let’s go to sleep,”

I smirk down at her sneaking a glance at the time. It’s eleven. I smile down at Sophie, quickly letting go of her hand to pull the sheets up to cover us and snapping twice to turn off the lights. I lace our fingers together as Sophie swings her leg over me. I press a kiss to Sophie’s lips. “Good night, Sophie,”

Sophie sighs and closes her eyes. “Love you, Keefe,” Sophie plants a kiss on my top lip.

I watch in the darkness Sophie falling fast asleep, her breathing coating my face. I look at our entwined hands. It feels as if there are holes in my skin and all my sadness and tension is leaking away. I smile at how Sophie slightly snores. My eyes go heavy and I slowly drift asleep.

***

I woke up from my restless sleep for the glowing and radiant sun peaking above the horizon out of my window. It extended its vivid light across the deep crimson sky.

I yawn and I look down at Sophie who was still cuddled up at my side, her hand intertwined with mine and resting her head on my arm.

And I remember last night. Can I just say- Best. Night. Ever.

I grin down at Sophie whose eyelashes brush her cheeks. I reach down and kiss her neck- just barely.

When I lean back, I see Sophie laughing her eyes still closed. I smirk and lean towards her ear. “Good morning, love,”

Sophie leans up and kisses my shoulder. She dreamily says, “Good morning, Keefe,”

I kiss her cheek.

“Last night was like... the best night of my life,” Sophie says squeezing my hand.

“For now, Sophie- ’cause you haven’t seen-” I gestured to myself letting go of Sophie’s hand. “All of this yet,”

“Sure,” Sophie says, blushing. She lies on her back grabbing my right hand, tracing my tattoo while I watch her. She brings my hand to her lips and kisses it gently before lacing our finger together in a complicated pattern.

She scoots her head closer so that it’s touching my shoulder.

When I can’t wait any longer I lick my lips, tilting my head and lean down at Sophie’s lips. She grins and closes the space between us, colliding our lips together. Sophie grins as I place a hand on both sides of the pillow, pushing me up but never leaving Sophie’s lips. Sophie cups each side of my face, her fingers reaching my ears, leaning up, leaving her pillow.

We separate from each other, laughing at the sound of how our lips made when we separate.

Sophie laughs again and pulls me to kiss her. After our laughing dies down Sophie caresses my face with fingers, my face still hovering above hers, staring into her loving eyes. I lean into her mellow hand, closing my eyes as I do so.

Sophie pulls me down by my neck so that our foreheads touch and lips brush each other. I flutter my eyes open to stare into Sophie’s. Sophie’s chest rises and falls against mine while she smiles and it... melts my heart.

I have a sudden urge to kiss her again. I tilt my head and push my lips against her mellow ones, gently. She clutches my hair pulling me closer and dang she’s a good kisser. She french kisses me- hard but then it’s amusing.

“Sophie, babe,” I whisper, running my nose across her jawline.

“Mhh?” Sophie hums at my neck, kissing it gently.

“Do you want to-”

Someone knocks on my door.

Are you kidding me!?

I groan and get up from my bed, looking back at Sophie who was smelling herself. “I’ll right back,”

She nods and I walk over to my door. I open it only a few inches so whoever it is won’t see Sophie laying on my bed.

“Biana?” I slip through the small opening.

Biana was gawking at my tattoos which I had stupidly forgotten about.

I clear my throat and cross my arms. “What... what do you need?”

“Uh.... I-I,” Biana shakes her head, and I quickly shut the door behind me.

“It’s about Soph- wait are you hiding something?” Biana peeks over my shoulder.

My eyes widen. “No, no- it’s nothing. I just have this-” Biana pushes me out of the way.

My breath catches as she grabs the handle. “Bi-”

But I was way too late- she had already swung open the door. “Sophie?”

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